DoES Liverpool Safe Spaces Policy

Zarino Zappia edited this page Feb 9, 2019 · 4 revisions

DoES Liverpool provides a friendly, welcoming space that supports all members of the community. We expect all visitors to DoES Liverpool - including members, guests and attendees of events - to be respectful of each other and to create a welcoming environment to ensure that everyone can contribute and feels comfortable.

DoES Liverpool is committed to encouraging equality and diversity amongst our community, and to providing equality, fairness and respect to all our members and visitors. We aim to create an environment free of bullying, harassment, victimisation and unlawful discrimination, promoting dignity and respect for all, and where individual differences and the contributions of all members and visitors are recognised and valued

DoES Liverpool intends to provide everyone with a harassment-free environment, regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, ethnic background, or religion. We want DoES Liverpool to be a safe space for everyone and will not tolerate harassment in any form. We will take seriously any complaints of bullying, harassment, victimisation and unlawful discrimination. This commitment includes training directors, organisers, employees and members about their rights and responsibilities, which include conducting themselves in a manner that supports DoES Liverpool’s Safe Spaces Policy, and promoting these concepts in their daily actions, decisions and behaviours, as well as being accountable for their own words and behaviours.

All members, guests and attendees of events should abide by the following policy at DoES Liverpool and all its online meeting places.

All members should understand that they can be held liable for acts of bullying, harassment, victimisation and unlawful discrimination, and that such acts will be dealt with under DoES Liverpool’s grievance procedure, and appropriate action will be taken.

Further, sexual harassment can amount to a criminal matter, such as in sexual assault allegations. In addition, harassment under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 – which is not limited to circumstances where harassment relates to a protected characteristic – is a criminal offence.

Harassment can be defined as any conduct which is unwanted and offensive and affects the dignity of an individual or group of individuals.

Sexual harassment is defined as “unwanted conduct of a sexual nature, or other conduct based on sex, affecting the dignity of women and men at work”. This can include unwelcome physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct.

Harassment includes (but isn’t limited to) offensive verbal comments related to gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, physical appearance, body size, mental health, race, ethnic origin, skin colour, religious or political convictions; deliberate intimidation; stalking; following; exclusion (such as excluding from conversation); inappropriate physical contact; unwelcome sexual attention; and inappropriate or unrequested photography or recording; sustained disruption of events; or any action that makes another member uncomfortable.

Forms may include:

  • physical contact ranging from touching to serious assault
  • verbal and written harassment through jokes, offensive language, gossip and slander, sectarian songs, letters and so on
  • visual display of posters, graffiti, obscene gestures, flags and emblems
  • isolation or non-cooperation, exclusion from social activities
  • coercion ranging from pressure for sexual favours to pressure to participate in political/religious groups
  • intrusion by pestering, spying, following someone
  • bullying

What should I do if subject to harassment?

Anyone asked to stop any harassing behaviour, by anyone, is expected to do so immediately. Pay attention when others voice their discomfort or state their boundaries. If you act or speak in a way that someone thinks is inappropriate, it’s inappropriate. If somebody tells you that you are making them uncomfortable, you must stop making them uncomfortable. Do not put your opinions or desires before the comfort of others; “It’s just a bit of fun”, “It’s just a joke”, “Where’s the harm in it?” (and so forth) are not excuses for behaviour that makes anyone else feel unwelcome or as if they are a target. If you feel compelled to tell someone who is uncomfortable that they are wrong to feel that way, you are most definitely putting yourself in the wrong. If you are unsure whether your planned behaviour or comments may cause discomfort to others: ask.

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please don’t ignore it. If you feel that you can, challenge the behaviour directly. Please report the incident to the Grievance Officers whether you felt willing to challenge it or not. If the offender is a Grievance Officer, you can contact another Officer or a Director directly.

You should also keep a written record detailing the incidents of harassment and any requests made to the harasser to stop. This written record should be made as soon as possible after the events giving rise to concern and should include dates, times, places and the circumstances of what happened.

Contact details for all the Directors and Grievance Officers can be found on the People page of the wiki:

https://github.com/DoESLiverpool/somebody-should/wiki/People

If anyone engages in harassing behavior, DoES Liverpool may take any action deemed appropriate, including warning the offender or starting the Grievance Procedure.

Child Safeguarding

DoES Liverpool does not have the facilities or staff to supervise children who are brought onto DoES Liverpool premises and it is our policy that under 16s must always be accompanied by a responsible adult, and that this adult should be responsible for them at all times while on DoES Liverpool premises.

References

Adapted from the NottingHack ‘SafeSpaces’ document CC0-1.0

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